After more than two years Reagan tested and received her Black
Belt in Tae Kwon Do from Majest Martial Arts. She has worked SO hard going to practice at least two to three times each week during those two years. She was required to learn a poomsae, kicking combination and board breaking for each color belt in addition to memorizing test questions for each belt. That includes white, yellow, orange, green, purple, blue, super blue, brown, super brown, red, and bo-black. The black belt test prep included six weeks of Saturday practices for three hours each.
The test itself included performing all eleven poomsae forms back to back followed by three rounds of one on one sparring and three rounds of two on one sparring. It also included something called "domino" board breaking with four different breaking techniques. The kids stood in a line and had to go down the line breaking one board one by one then starting back at the beginning with the second breaking technique until all four breaks were completed.
The ceremony was a few weeks after the test and the same night as her First Communion. The ceremony was celebrated with a family tea. Each child sat on one side of a small Korean tea table with the parents and siblings on the other. Each child poured tea for their parents as a sign of respect for the support they gave during the journey. Each parent was asked to share words of wisdom with their child. Each child was also asked to read the speech they wrote that talked about what it meant to them to get a black belt. Reagan was very nervous about having to read it but did really well.
Reagan's Speech: "I started Tae Kwon Do when I was 5 years old, over two years ago. When I started I was very nervous but my mom told me it would be really good for me. I had brain surgery when I was just 2 months old and after that I have some trouble using my left side. My surgeon told us Tae Kwon Do would really help build my strength. When I started here it was really hard to just straighten my left arm the same as my right. But I have gotten a lot better as I practiced more. What I didn’t know is that I would really like Tae Kwon Do and that I would meet a lot of fun new friends. What this black belt shows me is that if I try hard enough, even when something is really hard, I can reach my goals. What it really means is that I never gave up."
Since the first day Reagan walked into the Do Jang she has read the phrase on the mirror, "My Goal is to Become a Black Belt." I've always wondered what she would do once she achieved that goal. I was worried she would want to quit. On the contrary! She has started asking about what she needs to do next. She was asked to demonstrate her long stance for a lower belt class Monday and she was beaming from ear to ear when the Master said "now that's how a Black Belt does a long stance!" So what is next? She wants to work towards her Second Degree Black Belt and will need to learn five more poomsae forms and the associated kicking and breaking techniques. It is so fun seeing her motivated to go to class. Time will tell how far she decides to take this journey!